Kashmiri hackers attack BBC news service

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has confirmed that hackers supporting the liberation of Kashmir have attempted to break into a server used to provide information to BBC staff around the world.

Corporation takes server offline to investigate politically motivated attack.

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has confirmed that hackers supporting the liberation of Kashmir have attempted to break into a server used to provide information to BBC staff around the world.

A spokesman for the UK's publicly funded broadcasting corporation said the attempted break-in did not compromise any information held by the server. The attack is thought to have been carried out by hackers supporting Kashmir independence who intended to post Kashmiri separatist slogans to the service.

"There was a failed attempt to hack into the service," said the spokesman. "It did not affect the content in any way."

The server, which is located at http://www.monitor.bbc.co.uk provides collated press information from around the world and provides a bulletin board for BBC overseas staff. It is run by BBC Monitoring, which provides news and information gathered from the world's mass media to the BBC as well as to commercial and government customers.

The BBC is currently investigating the attack and has taken the server offline, but could not confirm whether the police would be called in to help with investigations.

Computer hacking is becoming an increasingly popular means of political protest, with the crisis in the Middle East often spilling on to the net with hackers defacing rival sites with political slogans.

"Targeting a news agency can be an effective way of getting your message across," says Graham Cluley, a computer security expert for Sophos Antivirus in the UK. "It doesn't mean it was necessarily a political group. It could have been a 14-year-old kid."

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